January 26, 2011

#034

Photobucket
A weekly sampler of what we're listening to (new and old), and what we think you might like, too.

{LISTEN TO THEM ALL}

JACK:
Song: "MASSIVE NIGHTS"
Artist: THE HOLD STEADY

I want to have some massive nights with Craig Finn.

TONY:
Song: "PEOPLE YOU KNOW"
Artist: TAPES 'N TAPES

Cliche album cover aside, I like the latest, "Outside," from Tapes 'n Tapes. It seems they still know how to bash and how to build songs that shift gears in captivating ways, but their more mellow stuff may be improving, like "People You Know."

CHASE:
Song: "LONG TIME"
Artist: CAKE

This pick was a no brainer for me until I ran across a couple of new Peter Bjorn and John songs. Either way, it doesn't matter. I'm really digging the new CAKE album Showroom of Compassion. The band has managed to keep their groove over the years, holding true to the geeky lyrics and sounds my ears crave.

ECON:
Song: "CRUISERWEIGHTS"
Artist: THE EXTRA LENS

A project of John Darnielle.

KYLE:
Song: "BACK ON THE CHAIN GANG"
Artist: THE PRETENDERS

It's been a while since I contributed. But I'm not dead, wanted to let everyone know. I've been grad schooling, changing apartments, and digressing into 80's music. Okay, I'm not really digressing, I just never knew I liked 80's tunes. I do. Especially The Pretenders. I chose this song, honestly, because its a hit and I don't know much else of their work. What I do know is that Chrissie Hynde's vocals are mesmerizing, and her presentation offers an interesting take on femininity, as does a lot of the music from the time period. How can Chrissie be both hard and soft at the same time? Tough and passionate? Punk and indy, in the parlance of our times? Like a western and a Wes Anderson movie balled into one. And I'm finding more and more that I appreciate the restraint evident in the music (though not perhaps in the clothes).
Guilty pleasure confession: "I'll Stand By You" does something to me.

GOAT:
Song: "UP THE WOLVES"
Artist: THE MOUNTAIN GOATS

EVAN:
Song: "I LOVE YOU TOO"
Artist: DEAD MEADOW

I just recently started listening to Dead Meadow again, and it reminded me of how deeply and intensely I love this band for their obscenely loud, dense, whirling, and dreamy sound. Regardless of the fact that referring to their lead guitarist's singing as fucking abysmal could be considered complimentary and their songwriting at times veers outside the realm of what is often thought "tasteful", when they simply sit back and play, focusing on primitive, pentatonic improvised rock that is equal parts hammering and heavenly - it's really something special. At their best, they manage to give stoner rock grace, classic rock ambience, and psych-rock balls.

MARK:
Song: "SWIMMING"
Artist: BREATHE OWL BREATHE

This song, which I think is as pretty as any released last year, pulled me through papers.


GUEST CONTRIBUTOR: Laura, of Tucson, Ariz.

Laura, a former senior publicist at Penguin Books, runs Storyteller PR and spins great music for Tucson's independent local radio station, KXCI. Mark met her at the Dead Western Plains 7" release show. Laura likes excellent cheese, wants to learn viticulture in Spain, and does not think highly of Dave Eggers.

Song: "THE LIMIT TO YOUR LOVE"
Artist: JAMES BLAKE

James Blake is hands down my favorite 'discovery' from 2010. The way he warps and extracts sounds from 90's hip-hop samples makes me all tingly inside. His live performances involve him both mixing in front of his computer, AND busting out on a guitar or bass. I love what he's done with this Feist tune. He stays true to mood of the original, but the pulsing background and restrained voice distortion adds a creepy, floating-around-lost-in-space, vibe. Loves it.
Blake has released a lot of singles and EPs in the last 2 years, but his debut full length drops in February.

(for more Blake, check out this and this)

Labels: ,

7 Comments:

Blogger Chase Purdy said...

I'm really into the new Tapes 'n Tapes as well. There are a lot of great tracks on that album. I love getting into my car and playing "Freakout." I think it's my favorite song so far on the new CD.

I will say, the new album cover was kind of a disappointment. I was talking with Tony about it earlier this week -- it seems like a cross between Vampire Weekend and Spoon (photo + typeface). Meh.

I find it easy to get into Breathe Owl Breathe, too.

Laura's song was cool. I especially dug the video. I'd be interested in hearing more from James Blake.

January 26, 2011 at 11:03 PM 
Blogger JHitts said...

A bit like Los Campesinos! too, eh?

http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41pHO2lydrL._SL500_AA300_.jpg

January 27, 2011 at 12:04 AM 
Blogger Tony Gonzalez said...

Down on Dave Eggers, Laura? Why so? But I'm with you 100% on the James Blake. Awesome.

Jack: I still hate the Hold Steady. Particularly Craig's vocals (although maybe his lyrics are OK?)

I don't think the new Tapes 'n Tapes reaches as high as some of their best songs from days gone by. I do think the stuttering portion of "Badaboom" is great.

Kyle, have you listened to "Left of the Dial"? That's an 80s "indie" compilation that includes the Pretenders and a wide variety I think you'd like. I always associate The Pretenders with Lauren Grover (Fink), because she dressed up as Chrissie for that Rock party at the Palace.

Mark: Not totally sold on Breathe Owl Breathe, but I think I should be and will investigate a bit more.

January 27, 2011 at 12:11 AM 
Blogger JHitts said...

I can see why his voice would annoy people. I still dig them. They remind me of old-school punk vocals. But I think the lyrics more than make up for it. He's like John Darnielle if he decided to scream more. And the actual music is so simple, but so rockin'. I dunno.

I'd probabaly say I feel a similar way to Tapes' n Tapes as Tony does about the Hold Steady. I'm over them. The first album was okay, but nothing since then has really held my interest. Especially this song. It's really only 2 and a half minutes? It seems to last a lot longer. And that's not a good thing. Maybe you can enlighten me.

Also, speaking of Darnielle: Thanks to a talk with Oatess the other day I've been listening to some more MG (a few "Tallahasse" and "Sunset Tree" songs came up on my iPod the other day when I decided to hit shuffle) and forgetting how much I like it. Thanks, Jon.

Finally: Kyle, how is it that we lived together for two years and you're just now getting into the 80s?

January 27, 2011 at 1:18 AM 
Blogger goat said...

I figured this might be insensitive to say in the main post, but "Up the Wolves" gives an account of a totally nonpartisan political shooting.

It reminds me, in that regard, of Taxi Driver. It gives a sympathetic portrayal of someone driven to violence because of his alienation from the rest of society.

January 27, 2011 at 2:15 AM 
Blogger Mark Perkins said...

Well, hell, I really like that Pretenders track. Enjoyed the Cake track, too, and the double Darnielle is great. If y'all haven't heard Damn These Vampires yet, you absolutely should. Did not realize the Mtn Goats track was about a shooting. I'll have to listen to it again.

Dead Meadows: "equal parts hammering and heavenly"--I like that, and I like the ridiculous argument in the YouTube comments. Hearing my pick after it was... odd. As for James Blake, that bass! It's ridiculous, cinematic, fantastic. The only bummer of it is that it confirms that, yes, the right ear of my Grado headphones is failing.

January 27, 2011 at 2:49 PM 
Blogger K. Harvey said...

Sorry Jack. I've always been a step behind everything. Plus, I always seem to think I hate things that I end up loving. Like with Neutral Milk Hotel, still can't explain that.
I come from a very unmusical high school experience, which I'm still getting over. I learned to play bass to Journey songs...and...dare I say it, Supertramp.
"High Fidelity" still shames me.

January 29, 2011 at 6:45 PM 

Post a Comment

<< Home